Around Easter I ordered an organic turkey with the idea of serving it for Sunday dinner. This turkey was no lightweight. In fact, it weighed in at a whopping 23 plus pounds. I have never cooked a turkey that large before, and there was a reason for that. First of all, it is challenging to find a roasting pan large enough to hold such an enormous speciman of poultry. Smaller birds also seem to be more flavorful, and the larger the turkey, the more challenging it is to manuever in and out of the oven. Anyway…this bird seemed to have an exceptionally large bosom, and the pan I thought would be adequate was not even remotely so. This necessitated a trip to the 99 cents store, and while the flimsy aluminum pan was large enough to hold the turkey, it got all bendy just having the turkey placed in it while it defrosted in the fridge. Have you ever tried to take a pan of sizzling, drippy juices and weighty bird out of the oven as the lightweight pan buckles and caves in? It’s even worse than attempting to brine a turkey full of water in a plastic trash bag (okay…we won’t even go there with that episode).
I just had a birthday and Mother’s Day is this Sunday, so I decided to throw a late birthday/early Mother’s Day turkey dinner with all the trimmings. At this point, Big Bird had been taking up a lot of space in the freezer for a month, and who knows how long it had been frozen before we rescued it (okay, I know…ideally the rescue would have happened before the turkey met its demise). My recent birthday and Mother’s Day seemed liked an ideal time to invite friends and family over to celebrate with a feast of turkey with all the trimmings. My dear pal, Alondra, offered not only to provide her radical mac n’ cheese and stuffing but also to “prep” the turkey. She arrived earlier today with her huge electric roaster in hand and rubbed the turkey with various spices and garlic infused olive oil. She inserted a stick of herbed butter and an apple in the cavity of the turkey and plunked the whole concoction back in the fridge. I got to sit at my dining room table and just watch her work and chat. There were moments when I felt like I should get up and at least hand her items or something, but not enough to actually do it. It was awesome!
That Alondra can really cook and she does it in large quantities, because she has a big family and hosts a lot of holiday gatherings. She says it’s therapy for her, and that works for me. All I have to do is have my visiting son take the heavy turkey out of the fridge at 6:a.m. tomorrow and plunk it in the electric oven where it will basically roast itself on a low temperature for about six hours. Later on Alondra will bring the trays of stuffing and mac n’ cheese over and they will be popped into the oven. YUMMY!!!!
Thanks to Alondra my 35 guests, many of them children, will enjoy a succulent feast, including my garlic laced mashed potatoes and gravy, which will be my only contribution. I have other people bringing some other dishes, and I will write about that later, but for now, Alondra has saved me from slaving away over a hot turkey. Thanks to Alondra. I guess that’s what friends are for!